Encouraging the Heart

In your readings for this unit from The Leadership Challenge, you are introduced to the last of the five practices of effective leadership: encourage the heart. According to Kouzes and Posner, leaders must recognize contributions and celebrate values and victories, in order to encourage the heart.

The essentials of recognizing contributions include:

  • Expect the best.
  • Personalize recognition.

The essentials of celebrating the values and victories include:

  • Create a spirit of community.
  • Be personally involved.

For this discussion post, imagine that you have been asked by your leader to create a rewards and recognition program for your organization. Describe a program that would reflect Kouzes and Posner’s approach to recognizing and celebrating others and their contributions to the organization. Be specific and as concrete as possible. Include guidelines and suggestions where necessary.

Response Guidelines

Read your peers’ posts and respond to at least two. Consider your peers’ ideas for rewards and recognition programs. Compare and contrast their ideas to yours. Describe ideas your peers suggested that you would like to include in your program. Include additional thoughts or reflections that further the discussion. If possible, respond to peers who have not already received feedback.


Kouzes, J., & Posner, B. (2012). The leadership challenge (5th ed.). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.